Kwale County government has refuted claims by civil society organizations that it is duplicating projects saying all its development programmes were strictly guided by public participation regulations.
County Finance Executive Mr. Bakari Sebe said local residents enjoy the right of public participation fully and dismissed the claims as baseless, mischievous and misleading.
Sebe said Kwale is among six counties that have been recognized by the World Bank for embracing participatory budgetary process.
All decisions on selecting projects are informed by a felt need among residents who are always involved in the entire process. At no time have we deviated from this process which is a legal requirement, he said.
Mr. Sebe was speaking at the first stakeholders engagement forum for preparation of the 2018-2022 County Integrated Development Plan (CIDP) which was attended by members of the civil society groups, at the Kenya School of Government, Matuga.
Common sense demands that we consider only priority areas because of the meagre resources at our disposal and hence the issue of project duplication does not arise, he added.
He further said that the critics were free to go to the ground to confirm whether or not the achievements so far attained, were impacting change on the residents.
He gave the example of the construction of over 300 Early Childhood Development centres as one of the major achievements local residents are happy about because of its immense benefits to education.
Local residents have a great thirst for education and building of the nursery schools was their priority, said Sebe.
Sebe said the county administration delivered 85 percent of the development pledges contained in the previous CIDP adding that hitches in cash flow from the National Treasury impacted negatively on the implementation of some of its programmes.
The county contributes a paltry five percent of its budget requirements while the rest of 95 percent comes from the national government, he noted.
Source: Kenya News Agency